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Strategy for catching public mail with Sharepoint instead of Public Folders RRS feed

  • Question

  • Howdy all,

    I know this subject has been beaten to death but I haven't seen any definitive answer for my situation. Simply put, I want to quit using public folders to receive external mail for generic accounts (support@, info@, sales@, etc) and have them delivered to a Sharepoint 3.0 discussion board instead. However, these are existing email addresses on a domain handled by our Exchange server, so I'm not sure of a good way to get them to Sharepoint.

    The technical setup for mail is fairly easy. The best strategy so far has been an Exchange distribution list with a public email address that forwards to the Sharepoint email address. Problems with this approach:

    • Under standard Subject view on the discussion board, the creator shows up as System Account, not the email sender.
    • I can switch to a Datasheet view, but the value for E-Mail Sender is listed as the address of the Exchange distribution list.
    • The board doesn't keep copies of the original email as attachments, so we can't simply open them in Outlook to reply. In fact, the only way to see the original sender is Subject view -> Message -> View Properties -> "from e-mail" link. (Yes, it's configured to keep the original email and any attachments. It doesn't.)

    Is there a better way to do this? Since these are existing email addresses, I can't just create new addresses on a subdomain and expose Sharepoint's mail port to the Internet, and I'm not sure I'd want to do that anyway. Plus, I'm pretty sure that would still create entries on the discussion board with System Account as the creator, since public email doesn't come from an authenticated user.

    Thanks for any insights.

    Tuesday, April 17, 2012 9:48 PM

All replies

  • Hi Gabriel,

    Thank you for your question.
    I am trying to involve someone familiar with this topic to further look at this issue.

    Thanks,
    Lhan Han
    Tuesday, April 24, 2012 6:57 AM
    Moderator
  • Hello Gabriel,

    The below links explain the need of using SharePoint as an alternative to Public Folders.
    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/magazine/2007.07.publicfolders.aspx
    http://sharepoint.microsoft.com/blog/Pages/BlogPost.aspx?pID=611

    You'll need to create and configure Send Connector(s) in Exchange in order to ensure Exchange forwards the relevant emails to SharePoint instead of handling those by itself.
    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee806927.aspx
    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa998662.aspx

    You could also use third-party tools for migration from Public Folders to SharePoint. See if they help better compared to your current approach which you have problems with.
    http://www.quest.com/public-folder-migrator-for-sharepoint/
    http://www.avepoint.com/exchange-public-folder-to-sharepoint-migration-docave/


    Please remember to click 'Mark as Answer' on the post that helps you or click 'Unmark as Answer' if a marked post does not actually answer your question. This can be beneficial to other community members reading the thread.

    Regards,
    Nishant Shah
    Microsoft Online Community Support

    Friday, April 27, 2012 9:52 AM
    Moderator
  • Hi Gabriel,

    You can set up Exchange to forward any email bound for support@yourcompany.com to <email-enabled list or library>@sharepoint.yourcompany.com

    I hope that this is helpful for you!

    Regards,
    Brent

    Friday, April 27, 2012 12:13 PM
  • Nishant,

    Thank you, but none of those actually address the question I asked.

    Monday, April 30, 2012 9:37 PM
  • Brent,

    Thanks for the answer, but you can see from my question that I was asking about this exact scenario and gave specific bullet points with the problems it causes. Thanks anyway.

    Monday, April 30, 2012 9:38 PM
  • Hello Gabriel,

    I tested this approach and in my case I am able to see the creator is the person who sent the email... Some broad steps -

    - Create a Send Connector on Exchange and create appropriate conditions so emails sent to certain email addresses will be delivered to SharePoint instead of being handled by Exchange
    - Setup SMTP Server on SharePoint box and configure it to accept emails from Exchange Server
    - Test the incoming email functionality
    - Setup a Discussion Board in SharePoint Site
    - Send an email from an Outlook client from 'Dan Jump' (my test user), notice that email (.eml) comes to Drop folder on SharePoint box and gets picked up by Timer Service in 5 mins
    - Email is present in Discussion board all metadata intact i.e. Created by shows 'Dan Jump' (the test user who sent the email from Outlook), Subject is mapped to Outlook Subject and Discussion is mapped to Email Body. Original email is saved as attachment in the Discussion item.

    I think the only difference in my case is I am getting emails directly (by using Send Connector) delivered to SharePoint List instead of forwarding.


    Please remember to click 'Mark as Answer' on the post that helps you or click 'Unmark as Answer' if a marked post does not actually answer your question. This can be beneficial to other community members reading the thread.

    Regards,
    Nishant Shah
    Microsoft Online Community Support


    Thursday, May 3, 2012 3:46 PM
    Moderator
  • Nishant,

    Thanks. That reproduces my testing with internal users.

    However, I am trying to set up public email addresses (sales@, info@, etc) and so the senders are not on the same messaging system as the Sharepoint system. I suspect if you send from a generic Gmail or Live.com address to your setup, you'll see the same results as me.

    Thursday, May 3, 2012 7:31 PM
  • Hello Gabriel,

    I don't have a way to deliver emails from an external system to my test setup. (tried sending an email from external system to SharePoint discussion board address {which of course gets NDR}, converting that sent .msg to .eml and drop it to SharePoint's environment's drop folder, but SharePoint doesn't like it that way!).
    If you could, please test a new address on a subdomain and expose SharePoint's mail port to the Internet (I understand its not going to be authenticated tho it would eliminate the intermediate forwarder account from picture).

    However, other members of the community may still have encountered the issue you're seeing, and have a solution to offer!


    Please remember to click 'Mark as Answer' on the post that helps you or click 'Unmark as Answer' if a marked post does not actually answer your question. This can be beneficial to other community members reading the thread.

    Regards,
    Nishant Shah
    Microsoft Online Community Support


    Friday, May 4, 2012 2:57 PM
    Moderator
  • Nishant,

    Thank you, but this simply doesn't address the situation that I described in detail in my original post. I do not have the option of using subdomains because I'm trying to migrate legacy email addresses that are known to many external contacts. If the answer is "there's no way to do it" then I will accept that as a Sharepoint limitation, but I so far none of the workarounds address what is a very, very basic email need.

    Monday, May 7, 2012 4:54 PM
  • Hello Gabriel,

    I cant imagine how this can be termed as "SharePoint limitation" when multiple external (non-SharePoint) factors add to the behavior you're seeing!!

    This topic requires a more in-depth level of support.  Please visit the below link to see the various paid support options that are available to better meet your needs: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?id=fh;en-us;offerprophone. If you are a MSDN / TechNet subscriber, you can also contact our support by using your free support incidents.


    Please remember to click 'Mark as Answer' on the post that helps you or click 'Unmark as Answer' if a marked post does not actually answer your question. This can be beneficial to other community members reading the thread.

    Regards,
    Nishant Shah
    Microsoft Online Community Support



    Tuesday, May 8, 2012 9:35 AM
    Moderator